User Score
9.0

Universal acclaim- based on 1099 Ratings

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  1. Oct 25, 2013
    6
    A good game in the series. Its not on the same level as Ocarina of Time and Twilight Princess, which offers both the colourful and happy environments, combined with the dark and mystic. The more "cartoonish" art style is a fun contribution to the series along with Skyward Sword, but Im really hoping the next Wii U Zelda will be more realistic, like OOT and TP (the best selling in theA good game in the series. Its not on the same level as Ocarina of Time and Twilight Princess, which offers both the colourful and happy environments, combined with the dark and mystic. The more "cartoonish" art style is a fun contribution to the series along with Skyward Sword, but Im really hoping the next Wii U Zelda will be more realistic, like OOT and TP (the best selling in the series). Im also hoping that it the graphics will improve. The gameplay and stories are fantastic, but both WWHD and SM3D Land are very small in size, because of the low res textures. SM3D Land had a nice polygon count, with nice round shapes, which WWHD lacked. I think we need a new big open world Zelda which gives us both a great story and a serves as a showcase of the Wii Us graphical potential. But as we wait for that, I think this is a good game to keep you satisfied for a little longer! Expand
  2. Oct 2, 2015
    6
    Tier 3
    + Awesome world with a lot of visually interesting set pieces and environments
    + Generally fun gameplay with several interwoven mechanics + Cool designs of enemies, characters, and mechanics ? The game world is vast, but for the most part feels empty and isolating as opposed to large and alive - The level design is incredibly linear, in no way offering genuine exploration aside
    Tier 3
    + Awesome world with a lot of visually interesting set pieces and environments
    + Generally fun gameplay with several interwoven mechanics
    + Cool designs of enemies, characters, and mechanics
    ? The game world is vast, but for the most part feels empty and isolating as opposed to large and alive
    - The level design is incredibly linear, in no way offering genuine exploration aside from looking for islands in the boat
    - Progression through the world is often tedious, with many challenges and story requirements forcing a lot of uninteresting travel downtime
    - Story feels arbitrary and generic, even for a Zelda game; the reveal of Zelda especially feels forced and totally random
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  3. Jul 16, 2016
    6
    Not a bad game, but way too frustrating to be the masterpiece many claim it to be. In particular, save games are quite a bit off, because they bring you back to the beginning of the area you are currently exploring.
  4. Oct 15, 2013
    9
    This review contains spoilers. I never played the original (I never owned a GC), but after watching a lot of footage and comparisons between the two versions, I can wholeheartedly say that an amazing remake. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD goes above and beyond what most remakes these days do.

    The most obvious point (considering that this IS an HD remake) is the graphics. Most remakes simply upscale the resolution to 720p and fiddle with lighting, edges, etc. to make the game look a bit cleaner. Wind Waker HD has many of its animations and environments completely rebuilt to look good in Native 1080p, and the game really looks like it was built for the Wii U. For a game with a more cartoonish art style like Wind Waker, the improvement may be obvious, but if you look at the details and backgrounds, you'll see the magnitude of the difference.

    In addition, Wind Waker HD smartly improves on a key aspect of the game that ruined it for some people back when it was originally released in 2002 it speeds up the sailing. Much of the original game was centered around travelling over the vast sea that made up the overworld. While this really accentuated the game's focus on open-world adventure and was a technical marvel for the time, many found the sailing to be too slow. This was made worse by the fact that you a to manually change the wind direction every time you wanted to turn your boat, which made navigating the overworld very tedious at times. With a new item called the Swift Sail, Link's boat moves much faster and automatically changes the wind direction to the direction you're facing when you activate it. It's a huge improvement.

    There are also a plethora of minor improvements that add up. Your inventory is continually displayed on the Gamepad, so you won't have to pause the game when you want to equip or look at items (though you can if you want). You can now aim in first-person for some items, and re-listen to hints given by fish you meet at sea whenever you want. Also notable is the added Miiverse functionality, where posts from Nintendo's new forum, randomly appear all over the world. This doesn't really improve gameplay, but can serve as a fun distraction from the main quest and is probably the best integration of Miiverse I've seen yet.

    Despite the improvements made, there are a couple of things that might serve to turn some people off from picking this game up. First the lack of any real additional content. Many cite that it was said in a developer interview that a couple of dungeons were left out of the final game. However, these dungeons were already used in later Zelda games like Twilight Princess and Skyward Sword. But the problem still remains: there's no new additional content. Remakes like Link's Awakening DX and A Link to the Past & Four Swords added additional content; the former added a new dungeon and the latter added a short game. Though Wind Waker feels complete as it is, additional content could really serve as an incentive for people to buy the game. More minor but worth noting is that Wind Waker loses a bit of its cartoonish feel in the jump to HD, though this can more attributed to the technology than to the developers. Still some may not like the changes.

    All in all, The Waker HD is an excellent remake. It improves on almost every aspect of the original while adding a couple of things as well. A little extra content would be appreciated, and the original loses some of its visual appeal, but that doesn't stop this from being a fantastic remake. If you really aren't that interested in remakes or really can't take to the visual changes, then you probably won't be sold on this game. However, If you never played Wind Waker before or want to play the game how it was meant to be experienced, then this game is absolute must-have for you.
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Metascore
90

Universal acclaim - based on 70 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 70 out of 70
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 70
  3. Negative: 0 out of 70
  1. Jan 6, 2014
    90
    After ten years Wind Waker is still as magical as it was when it was first released. The Wii U is all of a sudden looking like a console worth considering.
  2. Dec 12, 2013
    80
    Fond memories of older games can oftentimes come to shatter when revisited but The Wind Waker still shines bright even after ten years. It is almost hard to believe the game is even that old. The battles, the dungeons and the sidequests are all still top notch and wrapped in timeless cartoon graphics. Have you not yet been enchanted by The Wind Waker then now is a better time than ever.
  3. Nov 10, 2013
    100
    Wind Waker HD is a must play game not just for Zelda fans, but for every gamer.